Georgia’s Mercer University has stepped in save and revitalise the home of some of music’s most iconic recordings – Capricorn Studios in Macon.

CapricornThe studio was founded by Redwal Music (set up by Otis Redding and Phil Walden) in the early 1970s along with Capricorn Records, the label for Southern rock and soul acts including the Allman Brothers Band and the Marshall Tucker Band.

Among the many decisions made under the direction of Mercer University President William Underwood and Vice President Larry Brumley was to replace the original API desk that has lived in the studio since the 70s and been used on many legendary records, with a new API 2448 Recording Console.

The Capricorn console is the largest 2448 frame built to date, a fully featured 40-channel version with 40 mic preamps and 40 API equalisers. Each channel features two inputs, both with faders, and combining the main fader, second fader and four stereo returns gives the system 88 channels feeding the mix buses. Completeing the system is API’s Final Touch motorised fader automation, which is now compatible with Vision, Legacy AXS and 1608-II consoles, allowing projects to move between facilities equipped with those API consoles.

Steve Ivey, a Mercer graduate and Grammy award winning producer engineer based out of Nashville was a key figure in the planning and revitalisation of the studio: ‘For 50 years, API consoles and Capricorn Studios together have made a profound impact in music and recording worldwide,’ he says. ‘As a Mercer University music graduate who learned to record on an API console, under the direction of Capricorn producer Paul Hornsby, I am thrilled to be a part of the team taking Capricorn Studios and API into the next era of recording great music.’

Daily management of the studio now falls to chief engineer Rob Evans, another Mercer graduate. ‘Evans says that, in 2016,when Gregg Allman was receiving an honorary degree from Mercer, he told president Underwood, “the room is perfect, don’t change a thing”,’ Ivey recounts. ‘He also said, “get an analogue console”, so we’ve honoured Gregg’s request.’

‘It is gratifying to see the original API console from the 70s being replaced by a new API console, keeping the heritage and legend of this studio alive,’ adds API President, Larry Droppa. ‘We’re excited to have the opportunity to hear the new music that is going to come out of the facility. A huge thank you from the music community to Mercer University for having the vision to move forward and keep this dream alive.’

More: www.apiaudio.com

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